Hopes remain high in the search for 12 young football players and their deputy coach who went missing in the flooded Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai province since Saturday, Army CommanderinChief General Chalermchai Sitthisart said on Wednesday.
He was speaking during a visit to the operational site in front of the cave in Mae Sai district.
“The operation to locate the missing group has been going on around the clock in order to save them as soon as possible,” he said.
“The authorities believe the missing youth are still alive,” Chalermchai said.
However, their rescue mission has been handicapped by the continuing downpour that is aggravating conditions in the already-flooded cave and nearby areas.
Pumping machines were stationed in the area to pump water out of the cave to facilitate divers who are working through the muddy waters and in darkness in the cave.
The Army has deployed about 800 personnel as well as aircraft to help the mission, he said.